Blake Burleson, Ph.D.

Senior Lecturer
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Senior Lecturer in Religion
Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies of the College of Arts and Sciences

Education:
  • Ph.D., Baylor University (1986)
  • M.A., Baylor University (1982)
  • B.A., Baylor University (1978)
  • Additional Study: University of Texas (summer 1983); Yale University (summer 1997)
Biography:
Dr. Burleson teaches world religions. Texas Monthly Guide to Texas Colleges and Universities listed "Religion with Blake Burleson" as one of the four "best classes" at Baylor University. He teaches primarily in the Department of Religion, but he has also taught African Studies, Swahili, and Sports Ethics. He has traveled extensively on the African continent since 1978 and directed the African Studies Program at Baylor from 1996 to 2003. A member of the International Association of Jungian Studies and a member of the Advisory Board for Spring Journal, he has given public lectures and presented academic papers on Jungian studies in the U.S., Europe, and Africa. In 2007, Burleson was invited to give a plenary address to the XVII International Congress of the International Association of Analytical Psychology.

Ordained to the ministry in 1986, Burleson has served Baptists as teacher, pastor, administrator, missionary, deacon, adviser, and chaplain.  He is a founding board director for Africa Exchange, a mission-affiliate of Cooperative Baptists and is a member of Seventh and James Baptist Church, a progressive fellowship focused on the arts and social justice.  He was ordained in 2013 as an abbot in the Oriental Orthodox Order in the West, an ecumenical monastic order; Blake practices centering prayer, lectio divina, the Anglican rosary, and chanting as a part of his daily office.  He uses contemplative praxis in the classrooms in order to help students cultivate attention and develop listening skills.  In 1982 he married Sandy Evans.  Sandy, also a Baylor graduate, is a computer programmer, a master gardener, and stencil artist.  They have two grown children, both of whom are married.  Blake’s hobbies include carpentry, painting, backpacking, and hiking.

In his role as Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies, Burleson serves the 26 departments of the College of Arts and Sciences and their 6,500 undergraduates. He is responsible for strategic development, implementation, and oversight of systems and programs to improve the College's recruitment, retention, and graduation of undergraduates.

Academic Interests and Research:

Jungian Studies, African religions, Contemplative Studies, and the Wisdom Traditions

Professional Awards and Activities:

Advisory Board Member, Spring: A Journal of Archetype and Culture

Advisory Council, World Prayers Project

Member of the International Association of Jungian Studies

Member of American Academy of Religion

Member of the African Studies Association

Grants and Fellowships:

2011 University Research Committee Grant, Baylor University

2007 Summer Research Sabbatical, Baylor University

2005 University Research Committee Grant, Baylor University

2002 University Research Committee Grant, Baylor University

1998 Summer Research Sabbatical, Baylor University

1995 Summer Research Sabbatical, Baylor University

1995 University Research Committee Grant, Baylor University

1995 Faculty Development Grant, Baylor University

1992 Faculty Development Grant, Baylor University

1991 Teaching Fellowship, Summer Teaching Institute, Baylor University

1985-86 Dissertation Fellowship, Baylor University

Books:

Christosophic Poems: An Anthology of the Wisdom Jesus (2016)

A Contemplative Approach to Understanding World Religions: C. G. Jung as Phenomenologist of the Soul (2014)

Entempling: Baptist Wisdom for Contemplative Prayer (2012)

Jung in Africa (2005)

Pathways to Integrity: Ethics and Psychological Type (2001)

Selected Research Articles:

"The Baynes Film of Jung's 1925-1926 Expedition to East Africa" in Spring: A Journal of Archetype and Culture Vol. 85, Spring, 247-303.

"Jung in Africa: The Historical Record" in Journal of Analytical Psychology, Vol. 53, 2008; pp. 209-223;

"The Branch Davidians from a Jungian Perspective," Jung Journal: Culture and Psyche (formerly The San Francisco Jung Institute Library Journal), Vol. 16, No. 2, 1997, pp. 5-27;

"Fishing for Our Souls: David Duncan's The River Why as Masculine Individuation" in Aethlon: The Journal of Sport Literature, Vol. 12, No. 1, pp. 41-54.

Courses Taught at Baylor
  • REL 1310 The Christian Scriptures
  • REL 3345 World Religions
  • REL 4300: Special Topics: Pilgrimage to Sacred Places
  • REL 4313 Christianity and World ReligionsREL 4399: Senior Seminar
  • AFS 4301 Religions of Africa
  • AFS 3301 Africa in the Contemporary World
  • HP 5398 Contemporary Ethical Issues in Sport
  • HP 4396 Religion and Sport